DOJ Asks Court to Dismiss Case Seeking Equal Severance Pay for Service Members Discharged for Being Gay

The Department of Justice has asked a federal court to dismiss a lawsuit seeking equal severance pay for members of the military discharged for being gay, the AP reports:

Dadt The American Civil Liberties Union is seeking class action status for 142 people who only got half pay after their discharge because of being gay. But the Justice Department asked the U.S. Court of Federal Claims to dismiss the case. Judge Christine Odell Cook Miller said she probably will let the case continue and questioned why the government wouldn't pay now that the law has changed.

"Your timing is exquisite — two days after the policy goes into effect eliminating 'don't ask, don't tell,' here we are," she said as she took the bench. "I would consider this to be an unenviable argument to have at this time," she told the government's attorney later.

Attorneys for the ACLU are baffled by the government's action:

Joshua Block, attorney with the ACLU lesbian gay bisexual and transgender project, said class action would cover 142 people who got half pay for being discharged for homosexuality in the past six years — the time period covered by the statute of limitations — for a total payment of $2.1 million. Miller, first appointed by President Ronald Reagan and reappointed by President Bill Clinton, questioned why for that amount of money the government would want to wade back into the "don't ask, don't tell" debate.

Comments

  1. Michael Bedwell says

    Their “timing” was even better TUESDAY when—while we were celebrating repeal and Obama was taking bows for it—his DOJ was back in court DEFENDING its “constitutionality” AGAIN. Attacking gay troops’ rights twice in one week?

    And if he’d just stop fighting and endorse the LCR case as he has DOMA cases, Santorum, Bachmann, Perry COULDN’T bring the ban back if, Goddess forbid, one of them gets elected.

  2. Wayne says

    Pathetic. But not surprising. Obama is the one who has pushed for a weak broth repeal that DOES NOT include sexual orientation protection under military E.O. policy that are standard for other minority groups in the military, Obama CONTINUES to fight the LCR case that ruled DADT unconstitutional, and now THIS B.S.

    PATHETIC. As always with Obama, THE WORDS ARE PRETTY. BUT THE DEVIL IS IN THE DETAILS.

  3. Francis says

    What’s really eye-catching is how the judge more or less flatly called out the Obama administration as defenders of DADT and hypocrites. And really, there isn’t much anyone can say to show otherwise. Whatever the intention, what they are doing is going out of their way to continue the spirit of DADT and anti-gay discrimination.

  4. says

    Let’s hope we get a definite ruling that DADT was unconstitutional ab initio.

    Then let the chips fall where they may; on the self appointed idiots who passed it ,on the scum who defended it, and now on those who seek to uphold it.

    DOJ should bring back Counsel Woo and Bybee, they sure knew how to twist and manipulate and corrupt the law with their legal opinions on torture…….all twisted to suit their masters.

  5. Derrick from Philly says

    “Barry Hussein Obama is NOT your friend”

    He said he was your “fierce advocate” NOT your friend. He never promised such a thing. A man of his caliber doesn’t just pick any ol’ body as his friend.

    Now, Rick Perry–that’s a different story. You can be friends with him.

  6. anon says

    This is the old bureaucratic “it would be a bad precedent” issue. They don’t want a court ruling to open up a whole can of worms in other areas, unlikely as they seem.

  7. Michael Bedwell says

    NONSENSE, “Anon.” DOMA is federal law, duly if wrongly passed by Congress. Obama defended it for two years, saying he had to, blah blah blah, but NOW he’s said it’s unconstitutional and has not only dropped defense of it but is asking the courts to rule favorably on lawsuits he previously ATTACKED.

    There is NO functional difference re DADT and nothing defensible about saying, “Well, the Constitution may require the military to report to Congress and the President but let’s treat them like an equal fourth branch of government and let them do whatever they want.”

    In fact, referencing his reversal on DOMA was the basis in July for the 9th Circuit reversing themselves and reinstating a ban by the military on investigations and discharges that originally came from the LCR ruling that he’s STILL fighting.

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